Johannesburg - A manhunt has been launched for 16 prisoners who escaped from the Johannesburg Prison on Monday morning.

The Department of Correctional Services said the prisoners escaped from the facility, also known as Sun City, at dawn.

“According to a preliminary investigation, these remand detainees escaped in the morning at approximately 03:00. They escaped through a pipe shaft and used an object to break the wall then proceeded to the fence. A criminal case has been opened with the SAPS,” said correctional services spokesperson Singabakho Nxumalo.

“The Department of Correctional Services and SAPS have launched a manhunt following an escape of 16 Remand Detainees from Johannesburg Correctional Centre, Medium A,” Nxumalo said.

Twitter user @MHLUNGUOLUHLAZA wrote on his page: “prison alarm went off 3 times between 03h46 and 04h05. Prisoners fight or prison-break? (@Jhb Prison in Johannesburg South, Gauteng).”

Nxumalo said the department would issue a detailed statement containing names and images of the escapees and appealed to the public to assist with any information that could lead to their re-arrest.

The Star